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10 Cunard Repositioning Cruise Reviews

Booked the Queens Grill = £9.000 so quite expensive. Was expecting a real quality experience but very quickly realised it was not all it was made up to be. So, arrived in Southampton and entered a chaotic cattle shed where I was shunted ... Read More
Booked the Queens Grill = £9.000 so quite expensive. Was expecting a real quality experience but very quickly realised it was not all it was made up to be. So, arrived in Southampton and entered a chaotic cattle shed where I was shunted to the priority line. Walked on the ship to be told “the lift is over their, like “get on with it”. Walked around aimlessly for a bit and really found my cabin (943) by chance. Cabin was clean, bathroom tiles were dirty. A welcome was conspicuous by its absence. Food in the Queens Grill was like clockwork .. boring and on numerous times Luke warm. I never got the Gala Nights. Put on a DJ to eat dinner, nothing else, I expected the captain to sit with us or a gala ball for the Queens Grill ... nothing. What was very surprising is that during the entire trip not once did any management come to us to say “welcome” or “how it the trip” .. there was no discerning quality, they just wanted your money. So where was “packing and unpacking, or a morning pot of tea” .. didn’t exist. The evening canapés delivered to the room were simply low grade pate or other stodge. Cut my leg badly on the edge of a chair on the deck and asked a crew member to get me a plaster, he just walked away. The whole experience felt like a Chanel Ferry crossing .. once you leave the ship in New York you are on your own. There is NO assistance to locate your baggage or assistance with carrying. We are elderly and really struggled through the immigration hall and border controls to the chaotic outside with NO assistance to find a taxi .. total chaos. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
For our 40th anniversary, my wife and I decided to do something special, take a 7-day cruise on the Queen Mary II from Southampton, England to New York, May 11-17. I am writing to let you know why we will never do that again. On the ... Read More
For our 40th anniversary, my wife and I decided to do something special, take a 7-day cruise on the Queen Mary II from Southampton, England to New York, May 11-17. I am writing to let you know why we will never do that again. On the plus side, the room was very nice. Our steward was superb. The art gallery was excellent, and the entertainment was the best we have enjoyed on any of the multiple cruises we have taken previously on other cruise lines. We flew from Orlando, Florida to Paris and took a Viking river cruise. We then intended to fly to Heathrow and take the cruise home. Our problems with Cunard started on the last day of the river cruise. That night, we were informed that our flight from Paris to London had been cancelled due to a strike. Working with our travel agent, we were able to book an alternative flight. Cunard was informed of the change that evening and confirmed that we would be met at the airport to transfer to Southampton. Unfortunately, the next day, no Cunard representative was there when we left the baggage area. After waiting a while, my wife tried to call Cunard, but her cellphone stopped functioning. So, I left her with the bags to use a pay phone located at the end of the terminal. After going through your length tape messages, I finally reached some and explained the situation. The young woman pleasantly explained that Cunard was then talking with wife. Pleased, I asked for a direct phone number so I could avoid the lengthy process to reach an employee. She complied. I returned to my wife only to find she was not talking to anyone since her cellphone was still not working. We think Cunard was talking with our travel agent, who could not communicate with us because of the cellphone problem. I returned to the payphone. I dialed the number given me by the Cunard representative. I still had to listen to tapes, but when I reached the appropriate office, the line went dead. That happened three straight times. The phone then stopped taking my credit card. I returned to my wife. We had been there close to three hours by then with no apparent change. Reluctantly, I went back to the phone and used the old number. Naturally, I was put on hold because operators were “assisting other customers.” After about 10 minutes, I finally reached a woman who identified herself as Stacy. She listened to my concerns and then said she would put me on hold while she checked things out. I was put on hold. Within 30 seconds, I was disconnected again. At that point, I gave up. When I returned to the luggage, my wife told me a Cunard representative had just arrived. He was very nice and told us he had just been called, hours after we arrived at the airport. It was now almost mid-afternoon. The driver realized we had not eaten anything since arriving at Heathrow because I was at the payphone and my wife had to stay with the luggage. So, he stopped at grocery store so we could buy food for dinner. When my wife called Cunard later about the long delay at Heathrow, she was stunned to be told it was our fault and that a driver had been contacted as “as soon as” Cunard learned we were stranded. That’s simply not true. Cunard had been informed the night before, and the driver confirmed he had not been contacted until three hours after we arrived in the terminal. The delay at the airport alone should have warned us of the troubled waters ahead, but we continued anyway. We probably should have flown home. The hotel was nice, and in the morning, as promised, a taxi came to take us to the boat. When we arrived, luggage was handled efficiently. When we entered the terminal, an official directed us to sit and not go upstairs because crowding on the upper floor. We joined many others on chairs scattered about on the first floor. The official then began chatting with a colleague. Meanwhile, many people arriving after us went up the escalator. I finally interrupted the officials’ conversation and asked if we could go upstairs. The official who had stopped us before shrugged and said, “Why not?” Somewhat nonplussed by the behavior, we went to the second floor, got green passes and found seats. When our number was called, we were efficiently directed to the next available clerk and allowed to proceed. After passing through security, everything stopped. There was no announcement, but, upon asking a security woman, we were informed that, anytime a large boat went by, the dock disengaged. We were stunned that such a problem still existed given Cunard’s longevity. On the positive side, there were seats where we were located. Others were not so fortunate. I have a bad back and cannot stand for very long, so the available seats were greatly appreciated. In addition, we waited so long that our luggage arrived in the room before we did. Because of dietary restrictions, we decided to skip the dining room and go the buffet. We were disappointed in the design of the buffet area, which guaranteed everyone ran into each other and that one person could accidently block an entire area. The food, which was average at best, consistently ran out. Waiters occasionally bussed tables and often had to be asked to assistance. That disinterested approach to service was consistent. By and large, most of the employees ignored the guests and seemed unhappy. We have no idea why, but, perhaps, they heard the same grumbles we did. The staff member manning the tour desk next the pursers was actually sullen and rude. We simply asked for an emergency number should buses not be available in New York to take us to La Guardia. My wife declined to talk to him after that. In contrast, the staff at the pursers’ desk were uniformly nice and helpful. Breakfast and lunch were logistical nightmares. We began timing meals to try to avoid as much of a crush as possible. Conversations with other guests confirmed that they, too, were enduring the same difficulties. My wife and I have been on at least 15 previous cruises on various lines. This was the most-chaotic situation we have encountered. Activities during the day were very limited. The library was excellent, and I spent the mornings there. In the afternoon, I played social bridge. That was obviously an afterthought. On two occasions, the door to the bridge room was not open or marked. The first time, the woman apparently responsible for setting out the cards couldn’t find the room. We together discovered the door was closed. Eventually, no staff member showed up, so I daily distributed the cards and scoresheets. I also cleaned up. Such confusion was normal. The guide giving a large group of us a tour of the ship had no microphone. She finally gave up and called her boss to take half of the group. The glass, outside elevator was located behind a closed door with no sign to indicate its presence. I have no idea how my wife found it. We both got lost trying to find Connections and couldn’t locate the art gallery without assistance. We often passed people repeatedly as they, too, tried to get their bearings. Even staff members were little help. One just shrugged and told us that “everyone gets lost.” We talked to people who had been on the ship for more than 130 days as part of the around-the-world cruise, and they still didn’t understand the layout. We wanted to see the planetarium show and went down earlier each day to get tickets. We never did receive any because, as others noted, people who had previously been on the ship knew to arrive as much as 45 minutes early and went to repeat performances. Cunard staff made no effort to ensure that newly arrived guests had even one chance. After being repeatedly told that the individuals presenting talks were unfirmly boring and, in one case, indecipherable, we skipped that option. Since I have taught Elder Hostel classes on various topics for more than 20 years, I carefully avoid disinterested and disengaged speakers anyway. The weather precluded walking outside for all but the hardiest, but the pool was too cold for swimming. Normally, at home, my wife and I swim daily. As a result, we contented ourselves by walking up and down the stairs. We went early to the theater, assuming a crowd, but seats were never a problem except for the pillars seemingly placed throughout the room for the sole purpose to block views. Multiple seats were simply unusable. Nevertheless, the opera singer, comedian and Cunard singers really stood out for their performances. So was the harpist. Upon disembarkation, we gathered as requested on time in the theater. Nothing happened for close to 30 minutes after the planned departure time. Then the young woman who led our initial tour of the ship came in and shouted something. Inexplicably, she still hadn’t been given a microphone nor, apparently, did she have access to the sound equipment in the facility. A young man who entered a few minutes later did arrive properly equipped. We were so happy to be able to leave and remain saddened that Cunard, which was so noted for courtesy and service, should have declined to such a level. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
This was my 19th cruise - my first on Cunard and my last. The ship was full of mold - the dining rooms and photo galleries smelled of backed up sewage. There is so much hype and it did not live up to it - don;t waste your money - stick to ... Read More
This was my 19th cruise - my first on Cunard and my last. The ship was full of mold - the dining rooms and photo galleries smelled of backed up sewage. There is so much hype and it did not live up to it - don;t waste your money - stick to Royal Caribbean and NCL. The pursers desk was staffed by stuffy, rude people who were constantly making mistakes. The ship's crew had the attitude that we were there to accommodate to them. When I mentioned my concerns and the dramatic differences from my other cruise experiences, the answer was always this is an ocean liner, not a cruise ship - I have no idea what that means except that ocean liners are full of mold (stained damp carpets everywhere) and have sewage problems. My room steward was lovely, but I have never had anything but great room stewards. The entertainment was awful and really lacking. There was not much to do on the ship, The internet staff were rude and unhelpful. All this dress up business was a joke - to wear a long gown and tuxedo to eat in a room that stunk to high heavens!! The first night they told everyone to go the rear of the ship for a fireworks show which took place off the front of the ship. The food was bland and boring. Over done veggies and very few choices. I feel like Cunard should give our money back - this was a terrible, terrible ship. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
This was our 4th trip on the Queen Mary 2. We traveled once each of the past four years on the transatlantic. Three of the four trips we went Queen's Grill (first class) including this one. Three of the four were westbound ... Read More
This was our 4th trip on the Queen Mary 2. We traveled once each of the past four years on the transatlantic. Three of the four trips we went Queen's Grill (first class) including this one. Three of the four were westbound (Southampton to NY) including this one. The first trip was in June 2009, the second in January 2010, the third in October 2011 and this last one in November 2012. It was our final trip on Cunard (Carnival). Never again. This time we took a red eye from JFK into Heathrow (LHR)and had a car service pick us up at the airport and take us to Southampton. The embarkation area has not changed over the last few years and is unexciting. There is a roped off area for Grill guests to wait but the hard plastic chairs are no better. There was food and drink available for purchase. I would not recommend arriving early or well before your boarding time as it is quite boring to sit there and wait. The security process prior to boarding was worse than in any airport I've been through and I've seen quite a few as I am an Executive Platinum million miler with American Airlines. Many, including my husband, were frisked very closely and embarassingly. The staff was rude as if we were inconveniencing them by showing up. Once aboard, we were happy with our cabin. Since our last trip, there was a minor refurb. Last trip the furniture and carpets, etc. were really showing their age. The bed was much more comfortable and the worn out furniture replaced. One negative was the TVs had been replaced with smaller ones. We feel the new TV is a little small for the size of the room. The food and service at the Queens Grill restaurant was horrible - especially in comparison to our previous trips. Food was served cold when it should have been hot. My husband's steak ordered medium was served cool and was like shoe leather. We were constantly having to ask for our water glass to be refilled and for more bread. One positive note - they do have gluten free bread available that was some of the best we've ever had. We resorted to eating at the deli/pizza place at the King's Court many nights. The food and service must be a cost cutting measure for Cunard. We did complain nicely but the next night things were worse. We ordered prime rib. The cart came out and the maitre d served us himself because he knew we were unhappy. As he started to cut into it, you could see it was still frozen in the middle. He apologized and off to the deli we went in tux and evening gown - eating pizza and drinking wine. The food there was actually pretty good. We saw many of the ship's officers eating there as well. The lectures/speakers on this trip were not quite as interesting to us as on previous voyages. We did enjoy the way that the lectures are replayed on the TV so you can catch ones you missed or listen to it again. We also enjoyed the trivia in the Golden Lion Pub. Our favorite bar is the Commodore lounge with its view from the front of the ship and the piano music as well as the Churchill Cigar Lounge. They have outlawed cigarette smoking in Churchill's which seemed very odd to us. Every trip we've met some really interesting fellow passengers. In a way, it is sad to say the "entertainment" option we enjoyed the most this trip was watching a movie in the theater - great sound! A week or so prior to our trip, because of Superstorm Sandy, I called Cunard to confirm if the ship was going to be able to dock in Brooklyn as it normally does. The woman put me on hold to check and told me yes there was no damage to the pier. A few days before the trip, we received a message from Cunard that we may have to dock in Manhattan due to the storm damage. The day of disembarkation came and it was a complete nightmare. They did the immigration check on board because the facilities available in Manhattan were not as accommodating as in Brooklyn for this. The line was humongous and it took almost two hours. It was all one line instead of splitting up US vs. non-US citizens. You are supposed to have an assigned waiting area and be called by groups to disembark but this procedure did not work at all well due to the immigration hold up. Again due to the facilities in Manhattan, we could not disembark through the lobby as usual, we had to take an elevator to a lower deck. Again the line became quite lengthy and we had an inadvertent tour of some of the crew only areas before finally getting off this ship. There were no taxis immediately outside the building. We had to walk a block in the rain and cross a street - very inconvenient. I realize Cunard had no control over the storm damage but it seems there was plenty of time to plan how to handle the disembarkation much more smoothly. The Queen's Grill restaurant staff used to be the most experienced, top servers and chefs. It seems they are now rotating staff throughout the ship and the servers and chefs were more up to Denny's standards. We are big tippers and we learned from our other trips to tip up front with the wait staff. The first dinner, we always give the maitre d $200. As you sit down, the whole staff for your table comes to welcome you. The head waiter we gave $100, the other waiter $100, the bus boys/assistant waiters (three of them) we gave $50 each. It appears the tipping does not have anything to do with the service received. The table staff often ignored us. We filled out a guest comment card about this yet we never heard from Cunard. Guess they don't care about unhappy passengers. Several of the public restrooms were just disgusting this trip. Also, a few days after disembarkation, another charge for over $200 was made to our credit card. I called for an explanation. The representative I spoke to asked me if I had taken a bath robe or anything from the room. I was so insulted! Then I was told they would look into it then get back to me because they had to contact the ship and the ship would not be in port for a few days. I guess they can't use the radio or cell phones? He finally did get back to me and told me it appeared to be a duplicate charge from one of the bars and that they were issuing a credit. Finally, three weeks after our trip and multiple phone calls later, the credit was issued. Beware of giving your credit card to Cunard. I now understand why several passengers were paying in cash. Don't be fooled by the brochure. The pictures and the descriptions are less than realistic. Read Less
Sail Date November 2012
My husband and I recently completed 14 years of living in England and thought that taking the Atlantic crossing on the QM2 out of Southampton in August with our 16-month-old twins would give us a chance to recharge our exhausted batteries. ... Read More
My husband and I recently completed 14 years of living in England and thought that taking the Atlantic crossing on the QM2 out of Southampton in August with our 16-month-old twins would give us a chance to recharge our exhausted batteries. As you might expect, the logistics and details of an overseas move are many and complex--even without a pair of toddlers on our hands! We were desperate to have some time to enjoy ourselves after weeks of dealing with the upheaval, so we were already on our knees before we embarked. We had the option of taking a flight back to the US, which would have been covered by my husband's employer, but we thought that 7 hours of having unhappy toddlers on our laps would be sheer hell. Sadly, we traded the free 7 hours of hell for an extended 7-day version that we paid for ourselves. We were even more exhausted and literally on the brink of collapse when we disembarked in Brooklyn. Evidently due to a recent takeover by P&O, the policy for dealing with 1-2 year-olds on board had changed to one in which there is currently ZERO help available for parents unfortunate enough to have children in this age range on board. Our 16 month-old twins had to be monitored by us the entire time. Except for a minimal offering of a night nursery which stipulates that the child must be asleep or close to it before drop-off (ha! this does not really work in all practicality...) and that offers no assistance if the child awakes (a pager is issued to the parents so that they can be summoned to come back when the child starts crying). Since this service is only available from 6:00pm-11:00pm, there is little opportunity to enjoy the late evening entertainment that is on offer...sigh... And this is the only 'service' that exists! We just spent a week chained to a room in the Play Zone with age-appropriate toys but no staff (i.e. one parent must be there to monitor the child) commiserating with other parents caught-out by this change. When we weren't in the Play Zone room, we were chained to our stateroom when they were napping. Since the night nursery closes at 11:00 and we had changed our dining time to the late seating (8:30pm) to take advantage of this 'service', we had no more than 15 minutes after the conclusion of our meal to avail ourselves of any of the entertainment on board (which meant that we listened to some jazz for 15 minutes on two occasions). We saw none of the balls, no movies, no talks, nor any of the shows that looked as if they might be really enjoyable :-( We had ONE, uninterrupted evening meal together, and two others where one of us had to leave to retrieve a crying twin from the night nursery. Most nights were lukewarm meals carried down from the King's Court and eaten in our respective rooms (each parent taking one twin at night). We spent an entire week in expensive purgatory, knowing that lovely/fun things were available but that we had no means of taking advantage of any of them. Complaints to the assistant purser were to no avail--we couldn't even pay to have someone babysit because no one had been given the required background checks to do so! We have more options on land for care than we did on this ship :-( At least when our twins are sleeping when we are at home, we can go to another area of the house and do something. We couldn't even watch the movies on the televisions in our rooms while they were napping in our rooms--how sad is that?! Other parents caught-out by this were former employees on the ship, who had booked their cruise a year earlier (prior to the P&O) takeover. They still had friends on board who could babysit for them, and they graciously offered to watch our two for an hour near the end of the crossing, but unfortunately other things conspired against us, and we didn't even get to take advantage of an HOUR off :-( I sincerely hope that I am not offending anyone by this review (my ratings on most of the services are low because we weren't able to try them), but we have just paid an exorbitant amount of money to be made miserable. All the assistant purser could woodenly say was "I'm sorry, but that's the policy." Other passengers that we talked to were shocked that there wasn't some sort of paid nanny service available (which we would have GLADLY spent money on!). Could someone be kind enough to recommend a point of contact for us to further our complaint? We feel that we were misled, and so were the other parents that were caught in this unforeseen trap. Many thanks for any assistance that can be provided. We would also like to know if others have encountered this kind of situation or agree that it is not acceptable to discriminate against the parents of 1-2 year-olds. After all, if they are allowed on board, why isn't any proper assistance provided for them? Many thanks for your time and attention :-) Read Less
Sail Date August 2012
We were apprehensive about the many sea days on this Transatlantic voyage, but need not have worried. Our standard balcony room was comfortable, especially the beds, and had all the facilities we needed, including an enthusiastic, helpful ... Read More
We were apprehensive about the many sea days on this Transatlantic voyage, but need not have worried. Our standard balcony room was comfortable, especially the beds, and had all the facilities we needed, including an enthusiastic, helpful but unobtrustive steward. Check-in was easy at Southampton, we boarded the ship, met the steward in the room and went up to the Lido restaurant for lunch. From then on we had everything we needed provided for us. The entertainments every evening were mostly excellent, the dinners in the Britannia restaurant high quality, with dishes such as steak and fish showing no evidence that the chefs were catering for 2,000 passengers. Waiters upheld the White Star service Cunard is so proud of. We had the early sitting, otherwise we would have missed the shows, as second sitting's shows started at 10.30. On two of the last sea nights they had their show at 7pm, and I was surprised that not more people took advantage of this. Most of the passengers were elderly and tended to avoid the late night disco in favour of an early night, although they were scarily enthusiastic on the ballroom dancefloor, with even the mobility scooter users joining in on the sidelines. With a handful of exceptions, the passengers were British, and appreciated the Golden Lion pub with its traditional pub food at lunchtime, and the afternoon tea served in the Queens Room every day with accompanying string quartet, harp or pianist. I think the strong British culture was a bit much for the minority of Americans and other nationalities, though. Having experienced the loud behaviour of US guests on Carnival, and to some extent Royal Caribbean, the 'sorry', 'excuse me' and 'would you mind' around the ship was welcome to me, but would have baffled people used to a different ship board culture. Entertainment in the day consisted of fascinating lectures, the occasional new release movie, and a wonderful rendition of Twelfth Night by the resident theatre company. No belly flop or hairy chest contests on deck - people who like this sort of thing on cruises might have been disappointed. An excellent libary on two floors with a spiral wooden staircase separating fiction from non-fiction, a globe, maps and guidebooks with armchairs for reading was a joy, and as we walked around the ship on seadays when the weather was not so good, most of the bars and lounges had people sitting and reading (and a few knitting and embroidering). The Spa was good, but costly, which led to some annoyance when so many of the facilities were not working on certain days. A number of passengers liked to complain, but I could not understand what they could possibly have to moan about. They referred to the old days on the QEII and the Queen Mary, but I had to wonder if it was a case of looking at the past through rose tinted spectacles. We had attended a number of lectures on skyscrapers by Seth Gopin, who had slides of arriving in New York on the Queen Mary 2. This encouraged us to get up early to see the arrival in New York, which was magical, as we went past the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, with a commentary by one of the other guest speakers. The final Port of Call was supposed to be Sydney, but ended up being changed to Corner Brook because Sydney was full of cruise ships. The people of Corner Brook were very friendly and welcoming, offering us free luggage labels and lapel pins, and a shuttle bus (school bus) to the shops. We walked the Corner Brook Stream trail, which was created by the paper company when it put in the pipe to extract the water for their factory, next to the dock. When the QE arrived it blew its horn, and the paper factory replied with its own factory horn. There was a cafe on the hill above the dock with free wifi, and this seemed to be a popular place. There was another walk up to Captain Cook's lookout and a museum, but we didn't visit them, as we were a bit tired by the time we finished the walk. (This is included because Corner Brook is not on the list of ports of cal) I would highly recommend the Queen Elizabeth, and particularly enjoyed the theatre company, the resident dancers, the food, and the service. I would recommend this cruise to people who enjoy ballroom dancing, access to a large supply of good reading, interesting lectures and good quality entertainment. I would not recommend it to people who like loud noise, lots of bingo and rowdy entertainment, or for families with children (although there was provision for children on board if there had been any). The only thing that spoiled it for me was the constant moaning by some of the other passengers, but I think they were in a minority. Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
Having cruised with several lines, including Carnival, RCCL and Princess, we were looking forward to the promised luxury of Cunard. We couldn't have been more disappointed with the food, cleanliness, odor and general misery emanating ... Read More
Having cruised with several lines, including Carnival, RCCL and Princess, we were looking forward to the promised luxury of Cunard. We couldn't have been more disappointed with the food, cleanliness, odor and general misery emanating from the on board staff. Food is of low quality. The buffet areas resembles a cheap cafeteria with dried on food stuck to many of the walls. The buffet is spread across 3 serving areas several hundred feet apart, divided by stairwells and walkways. Carrying a tray between them is tiresome. Lunch starts at 11.30am in one area and some time after 12 in the other 2. Each area closes at apparently random times. It makes it hard to eat a main course from one station and then a dessert from another. By the time you get to the other serving area, it might be closed. For dinner, 1 area is closed and another is a $10 charge. Morale amongst the waiters is low, the supervisory staff publicly berate their subordinates with raised voices and abuse. The unhappiness of the staff shows in their attitude to the passengers. Any request for service will get the signature tut and eye rolling from most of Cunard's staff. They make it clear that you, the passenger, are a nuisance and an inconvenience. My final straw came when I was carrying two cups of coffee to my table. A heated argument was taking place between the staff again. One of the staff members in their angry outburst turned suddenly and strode off bumping into me and causing me to spill the hot coffee across my hand. I apologised to him for being there and he looked at the coffee on the floor and tutted loudly. An apology for burning my hand might have been nice but by this stage I had given up on all hope of good manners from Cunard.Dining in the Britannia restaurant was always an unpleasant experience. Service is always slow, food is often cold and you always wait at least 10 minutes before you get a menu. A glass of water, bread etc usually takes much longer. The food is a selection of poor quality, cold, greasy dishes. One particularly nasty meal included a piece of pork pie that was so bad it actually triggered a gag reflex. It should have been in the garbage which is perhaps where they found it! One lunchtime we had asked for and were seated at a table for 2. After finishing our main courses another couple were seated at the table with us. We were surprised but said nothing, not wishing to offend our new table companions. A few minutes later the Maitre d came over and told them they must move as they were at the wrong table. The embarrassed couple scurried after him like 2 scolded children which was how he had treated them.Dinners were no better. You are never asked how you would like your meat cooked. You would expect that it might be cooked to medium in order to be acceptable to most diners. NO, we got 2 steaks ordered and served at the same time except one was running with blood and the other was so well done it resembled shoe leather. Another time we were served the wrong dish. When we explained that we didn't order this, the waiter gave us the usual tut and eye roll and asked "Well would you like to change your order", as if it was our fault. When we then pointed out he'd served the wrong dish at the next course, he just walked away and sent over the assistant. Of course, on the last night, he was all smiles and happily showed us where to mark EXCELLENT on the guest comment card. You are often left for extended periods of time between courses then the food arrives cold. Waiters lean across you while you are eating and even drag their sleeves across your food plate whilst you are eating dinner.We gave up on afternoon tea. The daily planner might schedule it from 3-4pm, but that day it might not start till 3.30, so you'll just have to wait. The seating is very cramped so the waiters don't bother to try to get to you very often. On our last attempt we ordered and then waited 40 minutes for a scone. They also seem to have a policy of serving all the sweet items before anything savory like sandwiches which are then placed on the same plate. Nothing like a cucumber sandwich covered in powdered sugar. The cabin was of average size and appearance. The only member of staff who we can commend was our cabin steward. He did an excellent job of cleaning it and he never bothered us, we only ever bumped into him in the hall. He stood out for wanting to please us. Noise from the hall was not a problem, but the room rattled from the engine vibration and wind whistled around the lifeboat outside the balcony. From the balcony of the deluxe cabin, the view of the sea is a very thin strip between the lifeboat right in front of you and the crew launching platform on the other side of the balcony rail. The lifeboats run almost the entire length of the ship, so most cabins on deck 8 will have a similar view. The smell of stale cigarette smoke permeates every stairwell on the ship. Not sure where it came from as I didn't see anyone smoking, but the moment you opened your cabin door it caught the back of your throat. This might sound strange, but it is very noticeable, there are holes or soft spots in the floors beneath the carpet. Don't know if they are opening for valves or service hatches, but they are definitely there and there's lots of them. The floors in general felt like the welders made a bad job of them. You are constantly walking up and down waves in the floor. The ship is also very difficult to navigate around. Many of the entertainment venues require you to go up and down between decks and 'half decks' to reach them. Deck 3 splits at some areas of the ship to upper and lower decks and the deck plans do not do a good job of showing this. The night club is very hard to find, hiding through an unmarked doorway at the back of the Queen's room. From the stench of spilled beer and cigarettes, the cleaners have never found it either. A big deal is made of the fact that the ship is a liner and not a cruise ship and there is even a brief presentation about how the QM2 is better in bad weather. Even though the seas were fairly calm, we found the ship rocked more than cruise ships we have sailed transatlantic on. Cruise ships have more sheltered decks, far better for high winds than the QM2, built for bad weather. The top decks have no protection, but since there is not much on them there is no reason to go there. There is a green house like structure sheltering a small pool, but it is very basic. There's also an outdoor hot tub, but it looks like it's been a long time since it held water, and an outdoor pool for non swimmers, it's about 6 inches deep. Most outside pool life is at the back of the ship on decks 7 and 8, but again there is no protection against the elements so it's only for the die hards.On board entertainment was pretentious. 2 shows were performed by RADA, Shakespeare and Chaucer. Well performed but not really main stream. Another show was a violinist, I think was good if the sound engineer had plugged the mic in, but again pretentious. The planetarium films are some of the best entertainment, but the very limited seating and shortage of tickets is problematic. The movie theater showed 2 3D films. I didn't bother to see Alice in Wonderland, and a 3D film of the opera Carmen seemed an odd choice. I would have watched it but there was only 1 showing and that was during 2nd seating dinner. The suggestion was to change dinning time by using the Todd English restaurant at $45 each, a nominal charge !!Cunard are constantly reminding you about their history of glorious ships and white glove service. There are pictures of there old ships, captains, and staff on nearly every wall of the ship. They are living on their past glory. The QM2 is a cheaply decorated, poorly maintained and badly staffed ship. My advice, don't do it. There is a lot of competition out there and my past experience has shown that any other cruise line would offer a more pleasant experience. Read Less
Sail Date June 2011
Upon arrival of cruise very smooth but once going out of port I should have noticed the change. We were standing on deck l2 to watch view of Statue of Liberty which is the main reason we took this cruise. My Mother and I were asked to ... Read More
Upon arrival of cruise very smooth but once going out of port I should have noticed the change. We were standing on deck l2 to watch view of Statue of Liberty which is the main reason we took this cruise. My Mother and I were asked to leave and several dogs were brought out for "fresh air". About 6 feet of isle was blocked with chairs at each end. We then went down onto deck ll and there was a sign "Queen Suites only". This attitude continued on the entire cruise. The service was terrible, we were on Britannia dinning room and the "suite" rooms were served on Queen dinning room. The food was awful, I did not enjoy any meal I had there. Two other couples at our table agreed and said they would not return on this cruise line. When I complained nothing was done. In the pub I ordered steak and kidney pie, I received Sheppard's pie. When I brought this to the servers attention, she said I got your order correct and walked away saying she was new. She didn't offer to fix the meal. The fish and chips did not come with tartar sauce, the lamb didn't come with mint sauce and the overcooked lobster tail during formal night didn't come with clarified butter. It seemed that the staff did not know what food went with what. I've cruised many times and have never had such bad food. It was very difficult to navigate on the ship and find the library, Internet cafe, or photo shop. Whenever I did complain I was met with blank stares. My Mother was trying to walk with a cup of tea and cup of coffee but was spilling as she walked, due to her age (8l) and the rocking of the ship. A dinning room steward approached her and said, "Next time get a tray". He did not offer to help. Our room which was deluxe balcony was very small and had a blocked view. We couldn't see above the metal which was about 4 feet high. The planetarium was beautiful but was a nightmare getting in to see it. You had to get a ticket before 9am and arrive no later than 5 minutes before the show. Both areas were separate. My Mother and I got to the doors when they were open and they were just about to close them when we got there and we were not allowed to go in. There seemed to be a lot of rules and very little service. I purchased a beverage card and when I went to get a can of coke I was told at the bar on deck l2 that I could have a can but the bartender had to open it for me. Later at a different bar I was told I was only allowed fountain drinks unless it was in the winter garden bar. I went there and was told I wasn't allowed cans ever. I went to the pursers desk and was told only fountain drinks. I wish I had been told these rules before purchasing the card and I wouldn't have bought it. The entertainment was mediocre at best. This experience has put me off cruising. Read Less
Sail Date June 2011
4th January 2010. Queen Victoria, Southampton. We arrived at around 1330hrs at the cruise terminal, it was in chaos from the start, it took almost 3hrs before we embarked, there were no refreshments laid on apart from small canteen serving ... Read More
4th January 2010. Queen Victoria, Southampton. We arrived at around 1330hrs at the cruise terminal, it was in chaos from the start, it took almost 3hrs before we embarked, there were no refreshments laid on apart from small canteen serving tea and stale sandwiches which was over priced. The first night on board was as expected allowing passengers to settle in and the first dinner in the Britannia was OK but nothing special. I spent the evening in the casino and retired around 0130hrs and the next morning went to the "Lido" on Deck 9 for a self service breakfast 1015hrs. Dinner that night was undercooked and lukewarm, the only good thing was the service, the staff in the Britannia were great. It then came about that there was a virus on board and the "Lido" was to close (Not really surprised being served partly raw meat) It should be mentioned that MANY passengers eat in the "Lido" You could obtain tea & coffee but you had to queue and this could be for over 40minutes, if you went to any of the bars for tea or coffee you were charged. The Britannia restaurant for breakfast & lunch only opened the lower deck and ended up with large queues and only after a lot of complaints did they open the upper deck, again, the food was sub-standard as this was supposed to be a luxury cruise ship. (This continued throughout the cruise) I, being one of the fortunate ones did not get sick but those who did were charged for the privilege. Some of the staff in the bars were completely rude. The entertainment on board was at least mediocre but there was a couple of good shows. Disembarking was more chaos as the tannoy system was turned off in the cabins so not many people new what was going on. This is ONLY A BRIEF DISCRIPTION as there is MUCH MORE I must mention that I did the same cruise last year and it was FANTASTIC. In my opinion This cruise was a complete disaster and despite what "Cunard" might say, MANY passengers were and will be complaining as they certainly did NOT get what they paid for. Almost forgot to mention Room Service, 49minutes on the phone then gave up, cabin next to me said he was on the phone for over 1& half hrs Read Less
Sail Date January 2010
Our first cruise in 1999 on the QE2 was a 5 day cruise around the Caribbean. We liked the ship but the stops were uninteresting and the land tours overpriced. Our next cruise was just after 9/11 from Boston to Southampton. We enjoyed the ... Read More
Our first cruise in 1999 on the QE2 was a 5 day cruise around the Caribbean. We liked the ship but the stops were uninteresting and the land tours overpriced. Our next cruise was just after 9/11 from Boston to Southampton. We enjoyed the voyage but decided that it was better to travel from East to West as then the clocks were moved back each night rather than forward, which made for a more relaxing journey. We sailed quite often on the QE2 from Southampton to New York and then also on the maiden voyage of the QM2 from Southampton to New York. Our latest (and probably final) cruise was from Hamburg to New York. In the 'old days' on boarding a white gloved member of Cunard personnel was lined up ready to take one to one's room. After boarding for this crossing, on asking to be shown to our room, we were advised that the first concierge was busy and the second concierge was at lunch (when the passengers were boarding!!). So we had to sit down and wait for 5 -10 minutes until we were shown to our room. In good 5 star hotels, on arrival, one is shown to one's room by a receptionist. It seems that Cunard thinks otherwise. PRO s: We had been upgraded to a penthouse. A nice spacious room. The room was always cleaned and made up while we were at breakfast and turned down while we were at dinner. A very good breakfast with plenty of choices. CON s: After we had settled in the room, our white gloved butler bustled in talking on his mobile phone. He asked which 'free' bottles of spirit we would like. We said we would just like a bottle of Campari. Later he returned to say, sorry, not possible. Luckily we had brought a bottle of Campari aboard. We already had ice but asked for a couple of swizzle sticks................. with no result. On the first formal night we asked our butler if he could tie a bow tie. He said he couldn't, but would find someone who knew how to do it............no result. Cunard's cost cutting is very evident in the menus. Less or no luxury foods (eg: foie gras, souffles, table side cooking etc) Less desire to offer more rolls, cheese course and so on. Less petit fours. Dining room staff generally met expectations but never exceeded them. The auction/sale of 3rd rate junky paintings has become old hat. The shops on board are similarly selling either junky stuff or overpriced items. SUMMARY: Previously we considered Cunard's transatlantic crossings fair value compared with first class air travel plus 5 or so nights stay in a 5 star hotel. But at over $12,000 for 2, with only 3 star service they are no longer competitive. Read Less
Sail Date August 2009
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